Best of 2017 – Two Very Different Papers, P2P and Public Sector Collaboration

Continuing today our review of the papers we published this year, let’s turn to our old friends at BravoSolution.

We produced two quite different papers this year in conjunction with the firm.  The first looked at Five Ways To Maximize Value from Procure-to-Pay Implementations. In it, we looked at key points to consider in order to maximise the value that can be obtained from such systems. Organisations implementing P2P for the first time and those looking to improve current tools share many of the same goals and issues, and both can see a range of benefits arising from appropriate and well-chosen technology.

Those benefits discussed here are internal efficiency, capturing and leveraging spend, demand management (cutting out wasteful or illegitimate spend), fraud reduction and cash management (including supply chain finance options). Then in the central part of the paper, we looked at five factors to consider in order to maximise the value from P2P.

The first is around getting the procurement process right, and issues of configurability and customisation. Then the need to maximise coverage: ideally not just “traditional” procurement spend, but handling as much third-party spend as possible within the system. Getting and keeping internal stakeholders on board seems like an obvious recommendation to make, and yet failure to do so remains a major cause of disappointing results from P2P implementations.

Similarly, while suppliers cannot perhaps cause failure as easily as internal stakeholders can, making that group feel positive about the P2P programme and processes will contribute to the value delivered. And finally, the paper suggests that being clear about how to measure the benefits from the technology helps to prove that value – and will of course help when it comes to justifying any further investment in procurement-related systems.

The second paper was really a Public Spend Forum publication (but written by our own Peter Smith). It is titled Procurement Collaboration in the UK Public Sector and features the results of an online survey and some structured interviews Peter undertook with public sector leaders who had interesting views about public procurement collaboration.

And as we say in the Executive Summary – “there is much good work going on already, and indeed, promoting it more and explaining the benefits of collaboration (which are far from being purely leverage and cost savings) is one of the recommendations”. There is much to celebrate in public procurement; equally, our analysis identifies where further improvements can be made.

You can download both papers free on registration by following the links.

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